This time of year I am usually doing different versions of the same thing: cramming in some road miles, trying to get ready to do my annual hundred mile ride around Lake Taupo.
Road riding has its nice bits. The bikes can be very nice. There may be scenery. There are downhills, some with corners. There is getting home alive, and all that entails. It is possible, with a bit of planning, to make a road ride into a sort of cafe crawl, with more variety in the menus than what you are likely to find in a forest.
However, there are long stretches of what is not exactly boredom, but is a long period of relative sameness. The white line goes ever onward, hills can be interminable, and some have no immediate payoff. Sometimes the only thing that changes for half an hour is the position of the hands. On the tops, switch to the brake hoods, in between, back to the tops.
So it’s fun sometimes to throw in something different, to spark up an otherwise uneventful ride.
Could be a shortcut through the forest, could be a stop in a country pub. Hey, even a flat tyre can liven up a long flat section.
On a recent half-day jaunt I did something unexpected for no reason I can think of, that made me laugh for the next couple of hours.
I can’t even claim I did it out of boredom, because the episode took place about half a kilometre from our place, and I hadn’t even warmed up.
Along the road from where we live there is a sort of model farm, where people can come see animals and some farm procedures acted out. On the fence line were two women, tourists from Asia, who were both intently peering at a couple of lambs.
As I passed them, I said “Ba-a-a-a-a!!” as loud as I could.
One of them levitated about half a metre, the other took off along the fence line at full speed.
Both rotated as they went, so they could see what was behind them, and immediately started laughing when they saw it was me.
I laughed too, right then, and all the way up to Mamaku, and beyond.